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C7 7


"I got married to you because of my father's company", I said to her and she furrowed her brows at me in confusion.

I knew that sooner or later, I would have to talk about this with Adele. Ever since I first saw her at the dinner meeting with our parents, I knew she would be one to inquire about my reasons. I mean, what girl wouldn't?

"Do you mind explaining what you mean by that?", only when she said that did I realize that she had been waiting expectantly for me to continue.

"Uh, I have to be the next CEO of the company", I said again and looked up at her to see if she was still listening to me.

"So? Become the CEO then. What have I got to do with that?", she asked quickly in one breath and her face tells me she is frustrated right now.

"Calm down, it is not that simple", I said gently and she huffed at my words.

"You are really impatient", I said with a smile and she rolled her eyes at me this time around.

"Okay, so?", she asked after a while.

"My Uncle Jeffrey is my father's younger brother but since the company was passed down to my father by my grandfather, my uncle Jeffrey gets to stay at the company too", I started before resting my back against the couch.

"Now, it is my turn to inherit the company from my father and Uncle Jeffrey seems to have a problem with that"

"Oh", Adele said all of a sudden and I turned my head to look at her.

"He wants the company for himself", she stated with realization vivid on her face.

"Then, how do you come in?", I asked back with a helpless grin on my face.

She thought about it for a very short while and her relaxed face immediately went into a frown.

"How do I come in?", she questioned back and I chuckled.

"My Uncle doesn't want the company for himself", I replied to her with a chuckle.

"He believes I am not capable and competent enough to become the next CEO of the company and-"

"Are you?", Adele asked with a raised eyebrow and it was my turn to frown.

"I am. Everyone knows that. I have been working in that company since I finished college", I told her immediately, the tone of my voice raising higher a little bit. She nodded but she still held that doubtful look on her face.

"Anyways", I continued and stopped to take a deep breath before breathing out loudly.

"My Uncle Jeffrey met up with the shareholders of the company to discuss-", I started again and I groaned in frustration when Adele cut me off again.

"Cause he could not do it alone, could he?", she asked and I rolled my eyes before looking at her again.

"He could not do what alone now?", I asked back boringly.

"He couldn't stop you from becoming the CEO of the company alone. So, he met up with the shareholders, so they can remove you from your position together. That is more power", she replied with wide, curious eyes.

Her expression almost brought a smile to my face but I suppressed it.

"You are right- and you are also wrong", I told her and she slanted her lips at me.

She does that a lot, I have noticed.

"He met up with the shareholders to give them a reason why I wasn't fit to become the next CEO instead", I told her and she raised a brow at me.

"As he had said, which is actually true, I have not borne any other person's responsibility before. I have only had myself to take care of"

"He convinced them that if I were to get married and successfully stay with my wife, then I should be given the position. My father told me he married my mother before he was able to attain the CEO position as well. So, my uncle Jeffrey only dug up the buried and forgotten norms of the company", I explained and shook my legs continuously when I finished talking.

"Oh", she said and I nodded.

"Yes", I replied.

"Well, that explains a lot"

"What about you?", I asked and she looked at me with sharp eyes.

"What about me?", she asked back and I gulped before asking again.

"Why did you agree to this marriage?"

"What do you mean?", she asked with a frown on her face and I sighed. She is really stubborn.

"Like how I get to become the CEO of my father's company, what are you going to get out of this union? What are you gaining from it?", I asked slowly and this time around.

Adele looked at me, then she tilted her head up a bit so that she looks deep in thought. I don't get it though. How is she just thinking about it? Is it not why she agreed to the marriage in the first place? Or did she not agree on her free will?

She tilted her head back down and turned her gaze to me.

"Just for fun", she replied with a shrug and I frowned.

"So, you are being secretive now after knowing my reason for marrying you?", I asked in disbelief as I raised a brow at her with a frown on my face.

She shrugged at me again before replying, "I am going upstairs then"

She stood up immediately after she said that.


I got up after the talk with Christopher. I need to unpack my my suitcase and I feel so tired too.

I walked towards the suitcase and placed my hand on the plastic holder. But immediately after I did that, another warmth engulfed my hand that is on my suitcase's handle.

I pulled my hand away immediately I saw it was Christopher's hand before looking up at him.

"I wanted to take it up for you, that's all", he said to me with a cool, gentlemanly face.

I snatched the handle from him quickly and he looked at me in surprise.

"It's fine. I can take it up myself ", I told him before walking away in haste.

"Do you need help with it on the stairs?", I heard him ask as I was about to take the first step, so I turned back to look at him.

"I can take care of my shits, Christopher. I don't need your help", I told him harshly with the most serious face I could muster.

He stared at me without saying anything and I turned back before going up the stairs with my suitcase.

I have no problem with Christopher. I only need him to understand that I am not a child and I am not weak. I can do things on my own without his help.

I got into the bedroom again and I dropped my suitcase on the bed before opening it. I turned the suitcase over and all of its content spilled out of it.

'Mother and Veronica indeed did a good job in packing this up', I thought with a roll of my eyes.

I started folding the clothes neatly and properly when his words flashed in my head again. His words never fail to.

'Like how I get to be the CEO of my father's company, what are you going to get out of this marriage? What are you gaining from it?'

I frowned immediately after I was reminded of it. Why did I agree to this marriage exactly? Why-?

A memory suddenly flashed in front of my eyes again and my thoughts were cut short. It is a memory of the week before I agreed to go to that dinner meeting with the Marvins.

"I am not getting married", I said sternly and clearly to her as I looked up at her.

"Adele-", Veronica started and when my eyes snapped towards her as well, it finally dawned on me.

"Wait, that's why you are here unannounced, isn't it?", I asked immediately, cutting Veronica off.

"That's why Brandon isn't here", I added shortly as my voice went low.

"Well, it is a very important family matter", Veronica's voice came again and she ended her sentence with a sigh.

I looked at mother's face, then Veronica's, then father's. They all look serious, too serious that I could not help but burst into laughter.

"Like seriously, you guys", I started with a chuckle as I looked down at my fingers before looking up at them with a serious face now.

"Who am I supposed to marry exactly?", I asked as I looked at their faces one after the other.

Mother opened her mouth to say something, but then it went back to it being closed.

"Cause I can't seem to think of anyone who would be willing to marry someone like me", I stated with a frown.

When the silence was getting too intense, I folded my arms against my chest with a frown on my face, the plastic nylon containing my drawing supplies making a rumbling sound.

"That's why we found you a husband", mother said curtly and my eyes went wide at her.

Did I hear wrongly?

"What?", I could not stop myself from asking.

"Yes, like you said. Someone willing to marry you", she added again and I scoffed.

"You know I don't appreciate you making jokes any longer, mother", I rolled my eyes rudely as I said that to her.

Mother frowned at my words but I don't care right now. Why would she say something like that?

"Oh! But I am not joking, honey", Mother said to me, making me turn my gaze back to her once again.

I stared at her and she stared right back.

"I guess I am going up first", I said as I stood up from my seat. I am not going to have this sick conversation with her any longer.

"Veronica is pregnant!", Mother said loudly I stopped dead in my tracks. The realization of that hit me suddenly like I was unaware of it before. The plastic bag that I held in my hand fell to the ground without me knowing.

Mother stood up from her seat and walked towards me until she reached my side. She stopped beside me as she looked at the side of my face and I heard her voice once again.

"Your younger sister, Veronica is pregnant, Adele! She is", mother said the last two words in a very soft tone I turned my head to look at her.

Her eyes are staring intently at me but it is so misty. One meaning. She is pitying me again.

Her right hand is pointing at something and when I traced it, my eyes landed on Veronica's baby bump. Seeing that only made three words ring continuously in my head.

Veronica is pregnant.

Veronica is pregnant.

Veronica is-

The tears I have always tried to keep away from anyone else are threatening to fall again. The tears do nothing other than make me look so weak and pitiful.

I sucked in a very sharp breath, trying to keep myself in control and perfect order as I turned to face mother and spat those words out.

"I am not getting married. I am not getting married to someone I do not know. No, that is not going to happen", I said very clearly this time and I saw a tear drop from my mother's right eye.

"Do you not get it? You have no choice in this. You have no say in this!", Mother said sternly, ignoring the tears that continue to fall from her eyes.

"And I wonder why that is", I replied with gritted teeth.

I was starting to get annoyed at my mother's words. What exactly is going on? Why would I get married? What does she mean by them finding a person who is willing to get married to me?

Mother gulped as she cleaned the tears away from her face and looked back up at me, only much more boldly this time.

"Have you forgotten how you were treated after the incident?", Mother asked and I took my gaze away from her.

"After Daniel died?", She said again and I turned my head to look at her in surprise.

It's been long since mother or anyone else had dared to mention his name, talk less of reminding me of him.

"You were the bad person back then, Adele", Mother said softly before placing her hand on my left arm.

"You were called all sorts of names because they believed you had been the cause of it but I believe you weren't", mother said and I can feel a huge lump in my throat now.

"We all believe that", mother added as she gestured toward Veronica and father.

I looked at them and they have that sullen look on their faces. I bat my eyelids continuously, still trying to clear up that invisible lump in my throat before turning to face mother.

"And believe me when I say this, Adele", mother started again as she placed her right palm against my left cheek affectionately.

"It is time to let go", she said and I gulped for the umpteenth time.

I closed my eyes, not being able to contain it all and I was not quite surprised to find my eyelashes wet. I tried to think about what mother said but I was not even able to. Those memories are back, flashing in front of my eyes again. Those sweet memories that I wouldn't trade for anything.

I gasp as I pried my eyes open immediately and the realization dawned on me. It might not be the right time to let go.

I had made a promise to myself that I would remain and die alone. I am not going to break that promise over mother's words.

I removed my arm from my mother's hand and picked up the plastic bag on the ground.

I looked around the room, at their faces once again. They are all pleading with me and I wonder why. It is my life after all, not theirs.

I walked slowly away from mother and she did not make any advance to stop me this time around.

"It is for your good", I heard father say after all this while and I smiled bitterly as I continued walking towards the stairs.

That day did not go well at all. I thought about what mother said for a long time after that. It became the only thing I thought about and if you would ask me, I would choose that conversation as the reason why I agreed to marry Christopher Marvin.

All that mother said to me that day was true and I knew it. I know it till now.

I could not remain single forever.

* * *

Libre Baskerville
Gentium Book Basic
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